We had the good fortune of connecting with Santiago Alberto and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Santiago, how do you think about risk?
I believe it is important to get out of your comfort zone and not be afraid to take risks in pursuit of your dreams if they’re of a worthy cause that will help make the world a better place. I’ve noticed that every person I admire who is successful has experienced failure many times. Never be afraid of failure because it only makes you stronger. Taking risks has gotten me further than had I not taken them. One big leap I took was moving from New Mexico to Los Angeles by myself when I was 23 years old. That was a huge leap of faith and was not easy at first. It was a big change for me and I’ve grown so much since and have had opportunities that I don’t think I would’ve gotten otherwise. I just decided I was going to go for it and make the move. If it didn’t work out, I could always have a place back home but taking that risk paid off immensely. It all worked out and I have been very happy here and still love to visit home when I get the chance. Life has a way of working itself out when you have a dream and a plan. Sometimes things don’t always go according to plan but that’s where we can tweak the plan and adapt. Sometimes we have to just roll with the punches but we can always get back on track and eventually find our way to where we’re trying to be.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’ve always been very passionate about music ever since I can remember. I love to create music and help others create their own music as well. I would say that I am involved in music in just about every aspect from performing, recording, writing, arranging, producing and teaching. I just love the journey of creating music and sharing it with the world in hopes that it can be inspiring to others to enjoy. Music is very special and unlike anything else on Earth. It is very special as it can connect with people on a very personal level. My favorite thing is starting a song from scratch which is something I did on my latest single titled, “Ya Olvide”. It all began with the tune for the chorus that I had in my head. I began to expand on it and wrote lyrics for it. By the time I finished the lyrics, I could already hear the song in my head the way it should sound after it is recorded. Almost as if I’m listening to it on headphones except it is in my imagination. Once I have that clear sound in my head of how I want it to sound, I write the musical arrangement for it by putting it into music notation for each instrument. It’s as if I was transcribing a song I have already heard. The next thing is recording all the music the way I wrote it and making small adjustments along the way. This is a lot of fun because it starts becoming a reality where others can hear what you had in your mind and the song takes a life of its own. Once all the instruments are recorded, I add my voice to it and do my best to really get into the lyric so my interpretation can translate to the listener. Lastly, the song is mixed and mastered. This is where balance of all the instruments and any effects are added to make the song as pleasing to the ear as possible all while maintaining the energy of the performance of the singer and musicians. Once that happens, the song is released. This is my process for my original music and I think it is very unique because I work with the song from its inception till it’s out and the song will live forever after that.
My favorite thing is performing my music live where people get to hear my music in a different way from the recordings as I perform it in the moment which will never be done exactly the same each time it is performed.
Getting myself to where I am today and being able to do all these things didn’t just happen over night nor was easy. I believe it is truly a gift what I have in music but I know I can’t only rely on that alone. I continue to develop my skills through studying and practicing as much as I can. The road still hasn’t been easy and it probably never will be but I love it. Anything worthwhile isn’t easy. I actually prefer it to be that way as I appreciate the journey a lot more and it challenges me to become a better person. Having love and support from so many people continues to motivate me and push me to do my best.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
This past year has been crazy for everyone and I haven’t gone out much so there are a lot of places I’d want to take them to but it all depends on if they are open or not. Looks like things are opening back up again though so I am excited about that! During this pandemic, I’ve really been enjoying the amazing places that are outdoors right in our own back yard! I think the first place I’d want to take someone to is Laguna Beach. Especially if they are visiting from a place that is not close to a beach. That’s my favorite beach in SoCal. It’s also fun to explore Santa Monica as well. Totally different but both really fun in their own ways. I’ve always had a fascination with science and I think the California Science museum is awesome so I would take them there as well as Griffith Park Observatory. They’re fun places and you always come out learning something new. You also gotta have street tacos in East LA. I love taco trucks and you really can’t go wrong with good street tacos in LA. Another great thing about Los Angeles is the restaurants that have live music. I always take people to watch my friends Mariachi groups play in the different restaurants around town. You get the best live Mariachi music in the country right here in Los Angeles where world famous groups perform regularly. I’ve seen some of my colleagues being able to start performing at restaurants again so that makes me very happy. Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There is no doubt that I’ve been able to get to where I am today with the love and support of many important people in my life beginning with my wonderful parents. My mother and father, Angel and James Espinoza. They have always been my biggest support and are the reason I am who I am today. They are both musicians as well so I grew up in an artistic household. Going down my musical path, I’ve been blessed to have learned from and been mentored by amazing musicians beginning with my first mariachi music teacher Mr Alfonso Trujillo when I was in 7th grade. Another huge musical influence and mentor to me was my padrino Alberto Aguilera Valadez, known as Juan Gabriel who I was named after in my middle name. Another important musician and educator who played a big role in my musicianship is my dear friend Marcos Cavalcante, an amazing musician from Brasil who I studied with. The next person I’d like to give a shoutout to is Jose Hernandez, founder and director of Mariachi Sol de Mexico and Mariachi Reyna de los Angeles. He’s been a dear friend and incredible mentor to me since I met him when I was about 13 years old. The next person who I consider very important and has always been there for me is Jesus “Chuy” Hernandez. He is a great friend and helps me to become a better musician. He happens to be the brother to Jose Hernandez and was a founding member of Mariachi Sol de Mexico. Lastly, I’d like to thank my dear lifelong friend Ivan Aguilera who also happens to be my manager. I’ve known his since I was born which is very special and he’s always believed in me and helps me a great deal in my music career. I will always be grateful to him for that. There are so many others that I am grateful for including the rest of my family and dear friends who know who they are. I’d personally write about all of you but this article would then be well over 1000 pages haha. I cannot put into words how deeply grateful I am for each of these amazing people. I love you all. Thank you!

Website: http://santiagoalbertooficial.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/santiagoalbertoesp/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/santiagoalbertooficial

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCM-YTo9omtZt0szkYE1uK9A

Image Credits
Robert Hacman Dennis Chavez

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